Guidance on Initiating and Reviewing Electronic Personal Education Plans (ePEPs)
1. Purpose of the PEP and use of ePEP for all Hull LAC
A PEP should act as a record of what needs to happen for a Looked After Child to reach their potential. It should identify the child's educational and development needs and contain personalised short and long term targets.
The Personal Education Plan (PEP) is a statutory requirement which enables the social worker, residential staff/carer and Designated Teacher for Looked After Children at the child's school or, where the child has no school place Children in Need Education the Virtual School Team, in conjunction with the child, to set out what needs to happen to meet their educational needs. The PEP is an integral part of the Care Plan.
Hull has replaced the paper PEP with an electronic, web-based version, referred to as ePEP.
2. Which Children Require a PEP
A PEP is required for all looked after children, from age 3 up to school leaving age, as part of the Care Plan before the child becomes looked after (or within 10 working days in the case of an emergency placement), and should be reviewed as part of the statutory reviews of the child's care plan.
This includes children or young people who:
- Have an Education, Health or Care Plan;
- Are in an adoptive placement;
- Are not attending school or not on a school roll;
- Live out of city or in an agency placement;
- Do not want a PEP;
- Have a designated teacher who is hard to track down;
- Have had a change of social worker;
- Have support from Families and Friends Team;
- Pre-school children, including all aged 3 and 4.
This does not include children in respite care.
The Nominated Officer in consultation must approve any change of placement affecting a child in Key Stage 4, except in an emergency/ where the placement is terminated because of an immediate risk of serious harm to the child or to protect others from serious injury.
In those circumstances, the Local Authority must make appropriate arrangements to promote the child's educational achievement as soon as reasonably practicable.
3. Time Scale of Personal Education Plans
- The Personal Education Plan should be initiated as part of the Care Plan before the child becomes looked after (or within 10 working days in the case of an emergency placement), and be available for the first statutory review meeting;
- Review 6 months from start date, and every 6 months from then onwards;
- Review sooner if a change of school (within 20 school days) or for other need;
Exceptions to 6 month reviews (Hull);
- Special Schools – some schools may request every other ePEP meeting to be combined with the Annual Review of statement;
- Transition to secondary school – The first ePEP can be delayed until early November if requested by the school;
- Starting a new school at age of 5 - the first ePEP can be delayed until early November if requested by the school.
4. Setting up Meetings for an Initial ePEP and ePEP Reviews
- The child's social worker is responsible for arranging the meetings, in consultation with the designated teacher, around the most suitable date. The timing should be chosen to avoid a child missing lessons, and to suit the carer and other people who need to be invited;
- The designated teacher should assist in developing and monitoring the educational content of the PEP;
- Essential participants are: social worker, designated teacher, carer, parent (if appropriate), young person (if willing) and education coordinator and learning mentor, if the child is referred to them;
- Best meeting place is the school, in a room with internet access to facilitate speedy completion of the ePEP;
- Hold a separate meeting to the LAC Review and take the latest PEP to the LAC Review unless placement is long distance away when PEP meeting should be combined with another meeting;
- Use the Hull ePEP for out of city PEPs.
5. Requirements of Social Worker
5.1 In advance of the ePEP Meeting
- Ensure that the designated Teacher has been able to successfully log into ePEP, and has completed their section;
- Arrange for child or young person to complete their section of ePEP with support from the carer, school (only really applicable to younger children, or those with regular TA support), virtual school staff (if involved) or social worker;
- Ensure that the child's responses are noted either before, or during the PEP meeting, to enable them to be reflected in targets.
6. Requirements of Designated Teacher
6.1 In advance of the PEP Meeting
- Book a room in the school, with a computer and internet access, and arrange for other teaching and non teaching staff to be invited as appropriate;
- Discuss the PEP with the child or young person in advance of the meeting, and try to encourage them to attend. Check that they have been assisted with completing the young person's section;
- Complete education section of ePEP;
- Consider possible targets for section 4, by consulting with all who teach or support the child, and checking the child's responses.
6.2 After the PEP Meeting
- Ensure that any arrangements made at the PEP meeting to give extra support are put in place, and that the young person has been consulted on these, including through the use of the LAC Pupil Premium;
- Keep the education section of the newly initiated ePEP updated in advance of the next ePEP meeting.
7. Procedures for Social Workers and Designated Teacher during ePEP meeting
To complete during the meeting
- Establish boundaries of confidentiality;
- Record of people invited, and present;
- Short, medium and long term targets and strategies;
- Identification of how the LAC Pupil Premium is to be used to help meet the targets (not available if the child has not been in continuous care for six months by the start of the current school term);
- Agree a date for the next PEP review meeting.
The completed PEP should be distributed by the social worker to any professionals, or parents (as appropriate)/carers who do not have access to ePEP.
Subsequent PEP meetings should be held at six monthly intervals, but the new PEP needs to be initiated as soon as the last one has been completed. This allows the gradual addition of data and information in preparation for the next meeting.
8. Education Planning Post Compulsory School Age
- A PEP can, and usually is, replaced by a Pathway Plan once a young
person has officially left school - at the beginning of July in the school
year in which they become 16 years of age.
9. Contact Details for any assistance with ePEPs
ILAC Business Support Team, Kenworthy House, Tel. 612800